November 24, 2010
Snow On The Brain (And Mountain) As Squaw Valley Is Sold
While a bit outside our typical coverage area we’ve got snow on the brain and Squaw Valley has been sold to Colorado based KSL Capital Partners which plans to invest $50 million in the resort over the next three to five years.
Current base on the mountain: between fifty (50) and seventy (70) inches.
∙ Squaw Valley USA [squaw.com]
First Published: November 24, 2010 10:45 AM
Comments from "Plugged In" Readers
One of my pals reported after skiing there yesterday that he was amazed that one of the lifts that was on wind hold actually opened a few hours later. That almost never happened in the old days. We had suspected in the past that once a lift was placed on wind hold that they sent the crew home to save on payroll.
So Squaw might actually become a skiers mountain again. Now if they could just put back all those trees that were illegally cut down ...
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at November 24, 2010 10:57 AM
I think it was also just about a month ago that Northstar/Sierra were sold.
Posted by: Rillion at November 24, 2010 11:08 AM
My favorite mountain. Except for all the wind. Which is a result of all those illegally felled trees.
Despite being one of the few resorts that welcomed snowboarders in the early days of the sport (80s to early 90s), Squaw has been a skiers mountain for quite some time. There are way more boarders at the other resorts.
Posted by: joh at November 24, 2010 11:30 AM
Invest $50M? Okay, but how much was the sale price?
These guys are smoking crack. How many skiers will be able to afford rising cost of lift tickets under the current economic conditions?
Posted by: Jus7tme at November 24, 2010 12:47 PM
Does KSL still own the Claremont Hotel?
Posted by: Morgan at November 24, 2010 1:16 PM
Season passes were dramatically reduced last year (from 1700 to the 350-500 range) so it is more affordable these days. But, now there are more amateurs than ever! Lines are long and the potential for collisions has increased dramatically. I had some close calls last year. This year I bought a pass at Alpine and wear a helmet.
Posted by: yunion at November 24, 2010 2:32 PM
joh - Maybe I used the wrong term, but by "skiers mountain" I didn't mean a place that attracted a higher proportion of skiers vs. boarders. Rather I meant a mountain that put alpine snow sports as its priority, regardless of whether you hurtle down the hill on one or two slippery slabs of wood. Contrast that with places that offer an array of activities to guests : dining, shopping, video arcades, ice skating, spa facilities, etc. So why keep the lifts operating at maximum when your guests have the option of a massage and hot tub ? Squaw and Flatstar are good examples. Next door to Squaw is Alpine which has almost nothing but alpine sports. Very similar terrain and weather but a completely different experience. That too seems to be changing as I think Alpine also changed hands recently.
The best skiers mountains have no facilities at all, but you have to shell out the big bucks for the helicopter ride and guide.
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at November 24, 2010 2:47 PM
snow pine trees gravity
Posted by: Paul Hwang at November 24, 2010 5:11 PM
Squaw sold. More condos from hell.
Thats ok I would much rather go to the other side of the lake and go to Alpine Meadows.
Squaw, one way in one way out. no thanks
Posted by: inclinejj at November 25, 2010 7:50 AM
Skied Squaw the last three days; anyone that's worked there more than a few years has been singing "ding-dong, the witch is dead" all day long.
If you're in a SS speculative frame of mind many of the closets they call condos in the village are being sold out of foreclosure as are some of the other properties in the valley. New ownership = new opportunities?
Posted by: ellbee at November 25, 2010 10:17 AM
I just glanced at some of the listing for the village at squaw. Does anyone know or remember how much these things sold for initially? e.g. what was the average or range for a 1br, 2br, 3br in the village a few years back?
Posted by: squallywood at November 26, 2010 5:21 AM
Siberia could use a makeover. The real bomb here is that unlike the others, Squaw owns most of their land.
Posted by: schuss at November 27, 2010 11:52 AM
I was up in Squaw Valley for Thanksgiving and this was the best Thanksgiving snow I have ever seen (most years there is no snow at all). We left the Valley at 7:00 am this morning (after sweeping 6" of fresh snow off the car) and made it home without hitting any traffic (averaging about 50 mph on 89 and 80 in the snow passing a lot of 2WD cars chugging along with chains). Almost everybody in the Valley is happy the Cushing family has sold the resort...
Posted by: FormerAptBroker at November 27, 2010 2:50 PM
"The real bomb here is that unlike the others, Squaw owns most of their land."
Which is a great aspect for the new owners of Squaw but does nothing for most skiers who could care less whether or not the resort owns the land beneath their boards. And it works against experienced backcountry skiers since Squaw prohibits out of bounds skiing. Next door at Alpine the boundary lines are open creating a lot of accessible terrain for those with the skills and knowledge to keep out of trouble.
Maybe the new owners of Squaw will revisit their boundary policy. There could be interesting possibilities beyond the red tape.
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at November 28, 2010 9:28 AM